Lost Boys: The Tribe (DVD/Blu-ray)
Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Tad Hilgenbrink, Angus Sutherland, Autumn Resser, Corey Feldman
Directed by P.J. Pesce
Distributed by Warner Home Entertainment
"Sometimes dead is better" -- Jud Crandall, Pet Sematary
And dead is what the possibility of this movie ever happening should have stayed. We waited over twenty years for a sequel to The Lost Boys and got this? From the opening moments of the film when we see that the Sax Man is now tubby, I knew we were in trouble, and believe me seeing that dude's belly jiggling turned out to be one of the brightest spots of this total and complete mess of a movie. Wow, where to begin?
Chris (Hilgenbrink) and Nicole (Resser) suffer a family tragedy that leaves our brother and sister duo to fend for themselves in Luna Bay, California, which happens to be home to another band of vamps with a taste for blood and a love for extreme sports. Yep, nothing goes better with being undead than a little skateboarding and motocross. Of course Nicole ends up in the clutches of Shane (Angus Sutherland, real-life half brother of Kiefer, whom from now on I shall only refer to as The Sutherland because I refuse to believe any one human being can be so void of acting talent. This dude has to be like some form of scientifically created genetic freak or something. More on him later). Good thing for Chris, Edgar Frog (a returning Feldman spouting all the same dialogue from the first film) is in the neighborhood to help him save his sister and put a stop to all of the undead nonsense that's been transpiring.
Amidst all the wrong that happens in this movie, two things stand head and shoulders above the rest. First is P.J. Pesce's direction ... or rather lack thereof. The word sloppy immediately springs to mind. There were a couple of long shots in this film in which two characters are talking and only one of them is being filmed. Did he not shoot enough coverage? Did he not think this might come off as awkward? Maybe he just plain ran out of cash? There are even moments when characters interacting with each other on screen appear to be having two distinctly different conversations despite being in the same scene at the same time. Hello? Was there an editor involved here at all? Was this just thrown together? Instead of utilizing common sense, P.J. relies mostly on his two go-to camera techniques for this endeavor: speeding up the vamps so that they move at ludicrous Benny Hill-esque type proportions and, oh yeah, random slow-motion. I can understand using slo-mo for dramatic effect, but something dramatic would have to be going on for it to be warranted, no? In Pesce's world apparently not. Here there just has to be a hot chick dancing.
Now for The Sutherland. From the second this thing opens its mouth, things go from bad to worse. The Sutherland apparently has been programmed to believe that the best way to play a lead vampire is to channel the essences of Sean Penn's characterization of Jeff Spicoli and street magician David Blaine, and then mix the two with a stiff piece of cardboard thrown in for good measure. This thing just cannot emote. Its face barely even moves when it speaks. It's akin to watching a ventriloquist mouth words for his dummy. It's as if The Sutherland wasn't even trying. For you morbid curiosity seekers out there, this actually needs to be seen and heard to be believed. The Sutherland is out there. Pray he doesn't ruin any more films, and sleep with one eye open.
The DVD and the Blu-ray release share the same exact special features, but before I get into them, I have to address something odd about the Blu-ray -- namely, that this transfer is probably one of the grainiest and unsightly things ever pressed onto a disc. Ever wonder what bad computer generated film grain looks like in full 1080p? Here's your chance to find out. Wait, I'll save you the trouble. It looks like shit. Moving on ...
In terms of supplemental material things kick off with the four-and-a-half minute featurette Lost Boys: The Tribe - Action Junkies. I know you were dying for it, so here's your look at some extreme sport stunt choreography. Fantastic, eh? Next up is the only bright spot in this entire package, the five-minute Edgar Frog's Guide to Coming Back Alive featurette. Corey Feldman is the only thing even moderately good about this flick. Well, he and the free-flowing gore. Guess what? Both of these aspects are presented here together as an in-character Feldman offers vampire killing tips while showing off his "Vamptillery".
Then there are the two alternate endings. Normally I'd put up a spoiler alert, but I cannot imagine anything that I say could further spoil this experience. If you watch the film a little past the credits, you will see a sequence in which Feldman has a brief showdown with Vampire Haim. If that isn't enough for you, we see them together twice more in the alternate endings. These were wisely excised. Not because they're any worse than the rest of the movie but because Haim can barely get a sentence out without stumbling over his own words. It's a truly sad exclamation point on what should have been, at least on some level, movie magic. Tack on four music videos, and thankfully we're done. Not a minute too soon either. I don't think I could have taken much more.
Do yourself a favor. When it comes to a night with The Lost Boys, watch the original instead. This sequel seems as if it wanted to please the fans, but ultimately it plays like more of an insult to us than anything else. Consider yourself warned.
1 out of 5
2 1/2 out of 5
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